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Summary

Ray Mears is a household name through his television series Tracks, World of Survival, Bushcraft Survival, The Real Heroes of Telemark, and many more.

He is a private individual who shuns publicity whenever possible and would prefer to let his many skills tell their own tale - until now.

In My Outdoor Life, Ray tells of his childhood and the formative years when he first developed a passion for both bushcraft and the martial arts skills that are central to his life. Having travelled the world several times over, he is no stranger to risk and has had more than his fair share of dangerous and life-threatening encounters to share with his listeners. But his life is so much more than a tale of derring-do. Shortly after he returned to England having narrowly survived a serious helicopter crash, his father died. Just a year later, he had to face the death of his first wife, Rachel. The book conveys the many sides of Ray Mears, taking us up to the present day - including the previously untold story of his involvement in the man-hunt for murderer Raoul Moat. My Outdoor Life gives us all a chance to share a life story as rich and as inspirational as a walk in woods with the man himself, Ray Mears.

©2013 Ray Mears (P)2014 Hodder & Stoughton

Critic reviews

"Moving...gripping...The rather old-fashioned qualities he admires in others: fortitude, understatedness, loyalty, above all stoicism, are the same ones we admire in him. Long may he survive." ( Daily Mail)

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What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Matthew
  • PLYMOUTH, United Kingdom
  • 29-09-16

Great book ... But

I really did enjoy this book as I have followed Ray on the television for many years. However, I would really have appreciated it if he had read the book himself and The description really should have pointed out that he only actually reads the introduction

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Humble man with an amazing story

Absolutely tremendous listening.

His links to one of the masters of judo, through to his journeys around the world, along with the amazing people he has met, makes this audiobook enthralling.

Buy it, download and enjoy. You will not be disappointed.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Narration not by yours truly

Review lost one star alone simply for this book not being narrated by Ray Mears.. what a let down! Would've held more attention if that were the case.
Still, bitching aside, enjoyed the book and finding out things about Ray that would never have come across whilst watching one of his shows (and learning a few things things about bushcraft too).

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Inspirational.

Always been a fan and full of admiration. He has knowledge and passion of the outdoors that I wish I had. I'd have liked his path through life despite having a pretty good one myself. It's only now, as I turn 40, that I feel the real pull of the outdoors although I've had some great outdoor experiences myself. Am I starting too late? I hope not.

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Excellent insight to Ray the man.

This book is excellent and really gives an insight to Ray Mears rarely seen in his TV shows. However I was disappointed that Ray's reading ended after the Prologue and felt that some of the story telling was lost in Simon's interpretation.

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Hard to stop listening to

The book isn't read by Ray only the bit at the beginning so it is rather strange for it then to go to another narrator as we all know ray's voice so well. Having said that I thought the narrator did a marvellous job. I enjoyed this book thoroughly and found it a very interesting account of a very interesting life.

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Excellent

Enjoyed this book very much.
it was a real insight into Ray Mears life. Highly recommend it

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A good listen

An enjoyable listen - found the narrator to be a bit camp though. Good content

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A story without a voice !

This is very straight forward:
What an amazing man with an amazing story and it’s written so well, it’s as simple as that!
Unfortunately there is a big problem although the narrator has a beautiful way and full of energy and enthusiasm it’s just not the right energy for this book. In my opinion too many exaggerated words and a bit to much acting when pronouncing and reading sentences.

All said and done it’s an amazing listen to an amazing life story

Thank you Ray ✨🙏

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amazing book

Loved the book from start to finish. Ray has a wonderful outlook on life and a great sense of adventure and love of nature. Totally recommend

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  • Jonathan Cothran
  • 31-05-17

Great book for the adventurer in us all!

This book will feed the adventurer in you. Ray tells his story quite captivatingly with great detail.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark
  • 14-05-15

A wonderful experience!

An Excellent book, moving and inspirational. A tad slow in the middle but overall very very good. Highly recommended for anyone interested in Ray or the great outdoors.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • sparky
  • 07-04-18

Wonderful

I have more respect for the man now after listening to this book (twice back to back) then I had ever thought possible to have for someone who I have never met. An amazing life's journey.

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  • Mark Howser
  • 30-10-17

A man unparalleled in his craft & fervor for life

I look forward to learning more from the genius of Ray Mears. He is truly inspiring.

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  • Austin Pettis
  • 12-10-17

Inspirational!

I loved this book! The things Ray has shared in this book has had a strong effect on me. I've always enjoyed watching his shows and trusted the information he had given in them. He will continue to be an inspirational figure in my life as I go through my journey in bushcraft. I hope one day to join him on one of his woodlore expeditions. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the outdoors!

Thank you Ray for making this book and thank you Simon for reading it to me!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Collin Calvert
  • 15-08-17

fantastic.

It was quite good. even if you're not interested in outdoor living, it's a solid autobiography.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Nicholas Madia
  • 25-07-17

A Relaxing Read

He is truly a remarkable man. A bit long winded at times though. Overall you really learn about all the experiences he was went through.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-05-17

good "read"

Descent book thow he contradicts himself at times. Rilly sums up his life story well

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  • James
  • 06-05-17

Enlightening, Inspiring, Exemplary

What made the experience of listening to My Outdoor Life the most enjoyable?

As someone who only really knows of Ray Mears through his excellent TV programmes it was great to get an insight into how he became the person he is.

What did you like best about this story?

I found Ray Mears (audio) book well written, honest, personal, moving and pretty much unputdownable, the guy has truly lived a good and adventurous life. Ray Mears has always been the outdoor guy for me, his practical, non showy, as well as philosophical appreciation for the natural world and affinity for the people who can truly live in it is inspiring. So much and so many of our lives are spent in pursuit of things that offer us no real sustenance for body, mind, or soul. Even an occasional foray into the natural world is so good for us. Why not go for a walk in the woods, climb a mountain, or spend a night, or a week under the stars and read or listen to Ray's excellent story along the way.

Have you listened to any of Ray Mears and Simon Shepherd ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Only Ray on TV

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Yes, there were several things that moved me, but it's best to read the book for yourself.

Any additional comments?

Highly recommended.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • T. Holland
  • 11-04-17

Brilliant!

Would you consider the audio edition of My Outdoor Life to be better than the print version?

I haven't read the written version. I get the audio version because I spend so much time on the go, it's easier for me.

What other book might you compare My Outdoor Life to and why?

I have never read any other books that would compare to the life of Ray Mears because everyone is different.

Which character – as performed by Ray Mears and Simon Shepherd – was your favorite?

Ray Mears

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes, but because of it's length, I was happy to break it up. it gave me some expectation for when I could listen again.

Any additional comments?

I have always been a fan of Ray Mears, but this book really opened up his life to me in a way that, not just gave me the when and where of his life, but also the why and how. It was absolutely a gem. The respect I had for him as an outdoorsman increased 10 fold upon finishing this book. He is truly a master at his craft!